House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer, D-Md., meanwhile told reporters that remaining in session might mean letting lawmakers go home next month, but with a potential quick turnaround to get back to Washington for votes if a deal is reached.
“I think frankly giving people 24-hours notice means we’re not adjourned, we’re subject to the call of the chair. Obviously we’re not going to negotiate this on the floor. Members don’t have to be on the floor to do this,” Hoyer said Tuesday. “What the speaker is saying and what I would reiterate is we will be voting on a piece of legislation as soon as we get a deal.”
Even if Pelosi keeps House members in Washington past their scheduled Oct. 2 departure date, it’s unlikely that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will delay his chamber’s pre-election break, currently scheduled to begin on Oct. 9.
Keeping her more moderate members away from their districts could be a risky move for Pelosi, especially if a final agreement on COVID-19 aid couldn’t be reached before the election. On Tuesday the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus in the House was unveiling a $1.5 trillion package they say meets the two main proposals in the middle: the House Democrats’ $3.4 trillion proposal, and a $300 billion offering from Senate Republicans.